Published 16 January 2007
Tourism Holdings Ltd issued a roundabout NZX statement today, eventually telling the people of Otorohanga it was closing the King Country town’s third-biggest employer and was relocating the business to Te Rapa.
Tourism Holdings said the business, CI Munro, longtime manufacturer of motor homes, campervans, caravans & other special-purpose vehicles, was a subsidiary which couldn’t continue in such a small town. It has 110 staff but was 40 staff short and couldn’t tap into a large enough skills base there.
CI Munro is Caravans International Munro Ltd, a company which began as Otorohanga Furnishing Co Ltd in 1948 and was struck off the Companies Register on 1 July 2004. Its website gives no indication of a staff shortage â€“ and also gives no indication of the backup skills in the organisation.
It makes its mobile homes, and other specialist vehicles such as police booze buses, for the New Zealand & Australian markets, supplying Tourism Holdings’ Maui & Britz and other companies such as Pacific Horizon and United Rentals.But general manager Paul Hebberd said: “After considering various options, including remaining at the Otorohanga site, the company has decided to move the operations currently on the site to Te Rapa, Hamilton. The purpose of the move is to provide for the current & future needs of the business as it expands to meet growth in its markets.
“Most importantly, access to staff in the numbers required, and to the required skill base, demands that the business be located in or near a larger industrial centre.”The business is currently over 40 staff short, and thus has a significant recruitment need to deal with the level of business anticipated for the coming year.”The move will also facilitate the upgrade of machinery to meet future technical & quality requirements. The company anticipates investing $1.3 million on new or improved machinery & systems as part of the relocation. “The need for additional manufacturing space is also a factor in the relocation. The move will increase the short-term availability of factory space by about 30%, and also create options for further expansion on-site. The move will also provide a reduction in some operating costs, principally in freight & logistics.”
Mr Hebberd said the whole operation would move to a Te Rapa site which had yet to be confirmed. Meanwhile, caravan-building & some administration will move to a temporary site at Kapuni St, Te Rapa, in late January, some motor-home building will move there in April-May, and the move to the new site will occur by December.
Mr Hebberd said nobody would be made redundant and the company would provide a bus for staff, most of them Otorohanga residents. This will be evaluated after a year.
Tourism Holdings bought the business in 1995. It has its own research & development department and assembly operations, which include its own furniture manufacturing facility, and it has a separate fibreglass manufacturing factory. Want to comment? Click on The new BD Central Forum or email [email protected]
Attribution: Company statement, story written by Bob Dey for this website.